n 2020 ROSPHOTO received a private archive which contained unique historical documents concerning the oeuvre and life of two outstanding men — a father and a son. Despite the closest kinship of these two, their life stories belong to completely different periods of the national history.

The current exhibition consists of two parts and includes over 140 original photographs, rare and unique slides dating from the late 19th century, memorabilia items, film stills and comprehensive historical data.

Yevgeny Maksimov was a truly remarkable person: a lieutenant colonel of the Imperial Russian Army, he took part in the Serbian-Turkish war, Russo-Turkish war and Anglo-Boer war and perished in battle during the Russo-Japanese war. His son Georgy was born after his father’s death. When leaving to the front Yevgeny told his wife: “If I come back — I’ll be decorated with the Order of St. George, if not and if it is son to be born — name him Georgy.”

It is not unlikely that Georgy owed his keen interest in photography to his father, as Yevgeny Maksimov during his military expeditions had worked as a military photographer and had left his children a vast collection of photo documents. Consequently George also started training to become a photographer and a camera operator.

The exhibition is divided into two sections. The first one is dedicated to Georgy Maksimov and explores his private and professional archive. Georgy went down in the annals of history as a camera operator and photographer of the Lenfilm and Belgoskino film studios. Throughout his career he had a good fortune of working with such renowned film directors as Leo Arnshtam, Sergei Yutkevich and Yuri Tarich. Georgy Maksimov contributed to the creation of many important Soviet motion pictures such as The Girlfriends, The Man with the Gun, The Miners, etc.

The display includes rare photographs depicting famous actors, the members of the film crews and production stills. Thus the visitors to the exhibition are now able to learn about the process of film making in the 1920s–1930s.

Besides the natural, “unstaged” shots Georgy Maksimov was known for his remarkable photos of Soviet film stars created by the order of the film studios. Among them are the portraits of Yanina Zhejmo, Zoya Fyodorova, Irina Zarubina, Boris Chirkov, Nikolai Cherkasov and others.
The exhibition also features an important selection of film stills. The combination of still shots and moving pictures gives the guests an opportunity to feel the atmosphere of the Soviet filmmaking in the 1920s–1930s.
Other interesting items on view include a variety of fine art photographs by Georgy Maksimov: views of Leningrad captured at different times of day and night, photo portraits of his friends and relatives, which demonstrate the artist’s interest towards composition and plasticity of objects.

The second part of the showcase is devoted to Yevgeny Maksimov, his extraordinary life, his travels and military feats. Among the displayed pieces are authentic photographs taken before the revolution of 1917, Yevgeny’s personal belongings, military award certificates and side arms. The highlight of the section is the collection of the unique painted slides dating from the period of the Anglo-Boer war.

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